Thanks to the Fusion Investment Fund (Santander), I was able to visit Shanghai China during April 2017, to explore the research topic:
What demotivates Chinese Students attending Universities Abroad: The role of perceived leisure constraints?
I visited both Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Donghua University to understand the importance, if any, of leisure to Chinese students, and any impact on perceived attractiveness of the United Kingdom as an overseas destination for further study. As the UK and its universities consider the factors to market the UK as an international student destination, this visit found there is a need to create some programs to assess, observe and serve better the leisure needs of the current and potential Chinese student market. From being more proactive about helping Chinese students engage in on-off campus leisure and community life to providing staff instruction on how to correctly pronounce Chinese names, the leisure needs of current and future current Chinese students may need to be assessed to help newly arrived students in the process of adjusting and familiarizing to new leisure patterns.
My first visit was to a public research university in Shanghai, China. Established in 1951, Donghua University is a member of China’s Project 211 group of national key universities, with a heavy focus on high level technological and scientific research. I gave a guest lecture on how the UK leisure sector sees Chinese consumers, and how the events industry is seeking to facilitate as well as communicate to them. The lecture also looked at leisure trends taking place in China. I discussed with students how specific constraints at home and in specific countries abroad might prevent them seeking further study both in China and abroad
Picture: Much thanks to Dr. Chun-zhang Liu for the welcome.
Pictures: Guest Lecture
I also visited Shanghai Jiao Tong University to talk to students, about their perceptions of constraints to leisure in the UK vis-a visa other important markets such as the USA and Australia. Jiao Tong University is a public research university in Shanghai, China. Established in 1896. As the UK Government seeks to increase the number of international students, many Chinese students worry about moving to the UK for higher education and noted challenges such as psycho-social stress, including the possibility of social isolation. The students also noted other barriers, such as the accessibility of ethnic foods in the UK, joining clubs/societies, and possible changes in their leisure patterns.
Picture: Shanghai Jiao Tong University
Based on connections made to staff at Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Donghua University, quantitative data will be collected from 200 sampled students to explore leisure activity preferences and the perceptions of constraints to leisure if considering studying abroad. The results will also help policy makers and administrators understand the importance of understanding perceived life constraints when students consider the study abroad experience.
I wish to thank Santander for the mobility grant to visit Shanghai, and engage in a research project.
Michael O’ Regan, PhD
Faculty of Management
The past year has seen an increasing level of activity in this research theme, with lots of collaborative research and bidding taking place. Following numerous events in BU’s Festival of Learning, July saw BU hosting the ‘Making Waves’ conference, the annual conference of the Association for Events Marketing Educators. Over 130 delegates from around the world attended the conference, and feedback shows that they found it a useful and thought-provoking conference, with interactive sessions that made it a true “event experience”.
This summer has also seen the award of the 2015 Leisure Studies Association conference to Bournemouth University. This conference will be titled “Creating Leisure” and as the LSA conference is the largest annual conference in leisure research in the UK it provides BU with a great opportunity to showcase the best of our leisure research. This will be part of a succession of major international conferences held at BU in the Leisure, Recreation and Tourism theme, from the Advances in Tourism Marketing Conference (2009), the 3rd Conference of the International Association for Tourism Economics (2011), the International Conference on Tourism, Climate Change and Sustainability (2012) and the AEME ‘Making Wages’ conference (2013).
Last academic year also saw greater activity in seminars, ideas cafés and a festivity ‘mash-up’, and we are looking forward to a stimulating programme of Leisure, Recreation and Tourism events this year.
Prof Adam Blake
School of Tourism
Sign up to the Leisure, Recreation and Tourism research themes here:
Dr Miguel Moital of the School of Tourism has just returned from Brazil having undertaken the first block of fieldwork for a Santander funded project entitled,
“The internationalisation of the Brazilian tourism, hospitality and events research: Barriers and opportunities to publishing in international (English language) journals”
The economic growth of the past 15 years in Brazil has had a profound impact on the country’s tourism industry, further establishing tourism as an important economic activity. While Brazil attracted only just over five million international tourists in 2010, the country has a substantial tourism industry which is driven by a buoyant domestic market. The Tourism Ministry estimates that in 2009 there were 175 million domestic trips.
As the tourist industry matures, so does the need to develop a more in-depth understanding of the economic, social and environmental dimensions of the tourism phenomenon. There has been substantial growth in terms of education provision, but academic research has remained somewhat parochial, with much being published in the growing number of Brazilian tourism journals and some in foreign journals, whether Portuguese or Spanish language journals (mainly South American, but also Spanish). Very few have been published in English language journals. The end result is that Brazilian research and researchers are little known by the International community.
Therefore the aim of this research is to examine the barriers and look for opportunities to expand the international audience for research based on the Brazilian tourism, hospitality and events industries and in so doing develop a valuable international partnership.
We are looking for a potential overseas Post Doc to work in the area of Food and Tourism. In the first instance the candidate would work with collegues to secure the funding for this one or two year post, though we are looking at a funding route with a good success rate.
The specific package of work for the two years will be negotiated depending on the research interests of the candidate and the research team.
So if you have any connections with an individual that might fit the bill please get back to Sean for a chat. (firstname.lastname@example.org )